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About The Trip

Caitlyn Franks-An Awesome First Week

iceisrael July 14, 2013

Friday was a day full of fun activities! We woke up super early (6am!) and drove to the scenic Chula Valley Nature Reserve to go bike riding. The bike trail was approximately 6 miles long. A few hours later, we returned to the nature center feeling tired but accomplished. The best part about the biking trip was seeing all the NCSYers help each other out on the trail. A few bikes had technical difficulties along the way, but many NCSYers would immediately stop and assist them. At the halfway point on the way back, I nearly passed out and had to pull over. My advisors suggested that I take my time and catch my breath, and with their help I eventually recovered. One of my advisors, Ellie, stayed by my side throughout the trail. I was determined to finish the trail on my bike, and about 15 minutes later we were on our bikes singing Israeli songs and having a blast! When the other advisors saw me and Ellie returning at full speed, they were so proud that I was able to pull through the entire 6 miles. A major life lesson I learned that day is that life will sometimes throw obstacles in your path, but with an optimistic attitude and determination we can always pull through. 

After our biking experience, we went river rafting on the Jordan river. Everyone gathered into groups and rafted down the river as a team. The best part was the splash battles. The Israeli families in the water playfully splashed us like we were brothers and sisters. Our boats bumped against each other, traded passengers, and had an all out soak-a-war!
We then returned to the Hotel Ron in Tzfat where we had a relaxing and refreshing Shabbat complete with a walking tour of the holy city and Ebbed Shabbat away in a traditional NCSY fashion. We capped off our first week with an awesome night cruise Motzai Shabbat  in the Tiberias harbor.
ICE Israel week one-success!!
– Caitlyn Franks